DNA, also known as Deoxyribonucleic Acid is actually a molecule. DNA is a bunch of atoms stuck together. DNA is a kind of guidebook or a blueprint on how to build a life. From plants to animals, DNA defines us all. It is known as Deoxyribonucleic acid. DNA folds itself into paired packages called chromosomes which are stored in the nucleus of the cells. Each species has a different number of chromosomes, we humans have 46 chromosomes which contain our genes.
Table of Contents
- List of 10 DNA facts You Didn’t Know About
- 1. Your girlfriend can smell your DNA.
- 2. Our DNA could stretch from the earth to the sun 600 times
- 3. We are almost 98 percent identical to chimps.
- 4. We are 99.9 percent alike
- 5. Genes make up only 3 percent of your DNA.
- 6. We can sequence the DNA of a fetus with spit and blood
- 7. The human genome contains 3 billion base pairs of DNA
- 8. Your genome contains ancient viruses
- 9. DNA has been traced back over 300,000 years
- 10. 20 percent of Neanderthal DNA lives on in humans
List of 10 DNA facts You Didn’t Know About
These DNA facts do not just sound interesting but also sound equally weird.
1. Your girlfriend can smell your DNA.
Studies have shown that women are more attracted to the scent of a man with a different genetic code than her own. A difference in DNA might increase the chance for healthy children. So, what you perceive as chemistry may, in fact, be DNA!
2. Our DNA could stretch from the earth to the sun 600 times
If unwounded and linked together, the strands of DNA in each cell would be 6 feet long. With 100 trillion cells in your body, means that the total DNA in your body could make hundreds of round trips to the sun and back. For me, this is one of the most amazing DNA facts.
3. We are almost 98 percent identical to chimps.
We’re only 1.2 percent genetically different from chimpanzees. Our last common ancestor lived about 6 million years ago. We’re very close to gorillas, but 7 percent different from rhesus monkeys. After billions of years of evolution, we share genes with all living things on earth.
4. We are 99.9 percent alike
Not to diminish your unique genealogical tree, but it’s basically the same as everyone else’s. But those similarities are important: They’re what make you human.
5. Genes make up only 3 percent of your DNA.
The other 97 percent was thought to be “junk” DNA until recently. Scientists have found that this noncoding DNA controls the activity of your genes. It contains switches that turn genes on or off and program other compounds.
6. We can sequence the DNA of a fetus with spit and blood
With only blood from the mother and saliva from the father, scientists have recently constructed the DNA of an unborn child. That sample alone could help detect genetic diseases in their offspring — with no invasive procedures required.
7. The human genome contains 3 billion base pairs of DNA
Each cell has 3 billion base pairs or chemical letters. If those letters were typed out, it would take nearly 30 years of typing nonstop. That’s enough text to fill 200 phone books.
8. Your genome contains ancient viruses
Eight percent of our genome is made up of retrovirus DNA. These are viruses that have been passed down for so long that most have mutated and are held powerless in your system. But some retroviruses can take on new life, such as in people with HIV and several viruses that trigger cancer.
9. DNA has been traced back over 300,000 years
Scientists reported that they had found an ancient Y chromosome in an African-American man in South Carolina. It had been passed down intact for 338,000 years, predating the earliest known fossils of the modern human. The chromosome carried a mutation that scientists matched with one found in people of the Mbo tribe in Cameroon. That means that an ancestor of the Mbo interbred with an archaic African human.
10. 20 percent of Neanderthal DNA lives on in humans
People living outside of Africa today have genomes composed of 1 to 4 percent of Neanderthal DNA. Combined, these different scraps make up about one-fifth of Neanderthal DNA. It’s especially found in the genes that make keratin, which affects our hair and skin. The Neanderthal skin color gene is still found in 70 percent of Europeans. Scientists have even sequenced the DNA of a Neanderthal dead for 5,300 years and found he has living relatives.
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